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FORT COLLINS, Colo.—The hurricane forecasting team at Colorado State University has increased the number of hurricanes it expects to form in the Atlantic basin this hurricane season to five from the four predicted in April.
Still, the Fort Collins, Colo.-based Tropical Meteorology Project said Friday that it expects “slightly below-average” activity in this year's hurricane season, which began Friday and runs until Nov. 30. The annual average number of hurricanes during the period 1981-2010 was 6.5.
In addition to increasing the number of hurricanes it predicts, the team increased the number of named storms likely to form this season to 13 from 10, compared with a 1981-2010 average of 12. The new forecast, however, includes Tropical Storms Alberto and Beryl, which formed before the start of the season.
“We have increased our numbers slightly from our early April forecast, due largely to our uncertainty as to whether an El Niño will develop later this summer and to marginal Atlantic basin conditions,” said the team in its forecast.
Tropical Storm Isaac is expected to strengthen into a hurricane over the Gulf of Mexico and reach the Gulf Coast by Tuesday night or Wednesday morning. In our latest gallery, you'll find tips for companies to prepare for this natural disaster. View the gallery.